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Massage therapist banned for indecent assault
A SHIATSU massage therapist and reiki master has been banned from practising any health service for two years after being convicted of indecently assaulting a client more than three decades his junior.
The NSW Health Care Complaints Commission (HCCC) said Juan Valenzuela, based in the Blue Mountains, breached the Code of Conduct for Unregistered Health Professionals, which says he must act in a “safe and ethical manner” and “not engage in a sexual or other close personal relationship with a client”.
The HCCC said Mr Valenzuela breached the code by indecently assaulting the client in February 2010.
He also breached the code by establishing a close personal relationship with the client, who was 35 years younger than him and who he knew had experienced past trauma, the HCCC said.
The HCCC also said it conducted its own investigation after Mr Valenzuela was found guilty on three counts of indecent assault related to his conduct with the client and sentenced to a two-year good behaviour bond in July last year.
“As a result of this investigation, the commission was satisfied that Mr Valenzuela poses a risk to public health and safety,” the HCCC said.
The HCCC banned Mr Valenzuela from giving shiatsu massage, reiki treatment or any other health service for the remainder of the two-year good behaviour bond.
If he then wants to provide reiki or shiatsu treatment, he must first obtain membership and accreditation with the Australian Traditional-Medicine Society or other relevant professional association.
Mr Valenzuela could not be contacted for comment.